FUGITIVE KIND's members are the nucleus of Thrillhouse Records, the store and label and loose collective that are, intentionally or otherwise, shaping my neighborhood's punk scene, much the same way that Mission Records did in the early '00s. They play dirty and loose, the way the neighborhood flows, but this demo gives their songs a clarity that sometimes gets lost in their live shows (playing on a toxic beach in the wind while battling the rumble of a generator will do that to your songs). Zoe's vocals have an off kilter intensity that mirrors the often deeply personal lyrics, and Fred's drums have gotten infinitely more intense over the years since I first saw FUGITIVE KIND (basically, he hits harder...a LOT harder). Mid tempo and slightly melodic dirges that sometimes groove, but usually they flow like a sketched out over the hill macho punk doing that creepy crawl through the pit that he is about to start against the will of everyone around him...slow motion anger building and lurching, just waiting for the right time to explode. That guy is what this demo sounds like but the demo never explodes, it just seizes that moment of anticipation and builds a mood around it. Great songs buried under a wash of distortion and emotion...exactly where they belong.
30 July 2010
A few years back in Milwaukee we hosted a monthly mix tape exchange, and virtually every brand of mix passed through our little club, some were executed brilliantly and others were just a chore to listen to, either due to the songs selected or the complete lack of flow...but digging into the tapes was a pleasure every month regardless. I post mix tapes and/or compilations every Friday, surely you all know this by now, and surely you also realise that there is an art to constructing the perfect mix tape. If making a tape for a prospective love interest, there must be special attention paid to the lyrical content of the songs - you want just the right amount of your emotions conveyed through the words of others, without overwhelming the receiver with gushing love songs. If you are making a tape for a friend passing through on tour, you might want to lean heavily towards road worthy jams from bands like ZZ TOP, MOTORHEAD, or perhaps the more modern PHARAOH OVERLORD. Maybe you are making a tape to introduce a friend to a certain genre you are fond of, and if so you would be smart to include starter bands like SUBHUMANS, THE DAMNED or CHAOS UK to invite your friend into the wonderful world of UK punk rock, but if your friend had already crossed that threshold and wanted to delve deeper, then filling a tape with NAKED, REBEL ARMY and KRONSTADT UPRISING would help expose him/her to lesser known bands from the same genre. But sometimes mix tapes (or, in this case, a compilation) manage to do it all, and those mix tapes are special. Bad Entrails 3 is special. During the ensuing 90 minutes, you will surely hear songs that you are well familiar with, total hits that most punks already know and love, but you will also no doubt be exposed to new bands. There are bands here that I've heard of for years, seen the names on fliers, or maybe heard a song here and there, but these are the second tier bands that fly under the radar even though they cranked out great material...material that is included on this tape. Bad Entrails 3 is as close to a perfectly crafted mix tape as I've ever rocked, it moves from fast ragers to darker slower songs effortlessly; the flow of the tape is constant and maintains your attention from start to finish. Songs range from 16 seconds to over 6 minutes, but I'm not bored for even a moment, and I never feel like I'm getting jerked around by poor transitions. I wish I had access to Bad Entrails 1 and 2, but alas, volume 3 is sadly where my entrails start and finish, so relish in this: the perfect hardcore mix tape.
Also, this is where I am today, and what I'm doing: RW24. Can't ride unfortunately, due to the surgery earlier this year, but I will be at the start and the finish, and plan to man a checkpoint for the entire 24 hours. I have a feeling that this mix will play no small role in getting me through.
29 July 2010
This three piece has done their homework, and have managed to take psychedelic Krautrock and combine it with late '80s Wax Trax acts like CLOCK DVA to make a seven song cassette as thoroughly engaging as anything I've heard in quite some time. "Return To Zero" starts the tape with jerky club rhythms and space ship guitars that take me back to The Wreck Room circa 1989, and then "Passage" serves as a...well, passage into the abrasive and aptly titled "Anyuerism" which sounds like a lost MINISTRY offering with about 2/3 of the overdubs missing. Side A closes with an eight minute odyssey, featuring samples from one of my favorite documentaries of the last 10 years, upping the creep factor exponentially. Side B is more of the same - equal parts HAWKWIND and THROBBING GRISTLE, and closing with a 64 second burner called "Damage Report" that leaves you yearning for more. Fukkn great release from Linear B Tapes.
27 July 2010
It's been rather fashionable in the last few years for fast and furious hardcore bands to sneak on slow and heavy dirge onto their records. DEAD NATION did so a while ago, and it was the best song on their last EP, and more recently VACANT STATE released a pretty sweet EP with one jam on the flip side that makes listening to the "fast" side seem rather unnecessary. Well, Sacramento's RAT DAMAGE have skipped all the bullshit and are concentrating on those slow and mid tempo hardcore songs that nail you right in the fukkn gut. "Warmonger" is doused with a generous helping of Sunset Strip sleaze, but there isn't a hint of cheese, due at least in part to the venomous vocal delivery. Half of these songs have a hint of goth, but all of them drive at that motorpunk pace and command serious attention, if not a generous headbang. This four song tape is a precursor (hence the title) to a record titled Cursed, which I await anxiously.
This is the other demo from Victoria, BC's SECTION 46. More backing vocals throughout on this one, and I confess that they too often venture into "whoa-whoa" territory, but the pure punk power of these songs is indisputable. Still no song titles for this, or The Downtrodden demo, hopefully some old head from Canada can help the rest of us out with that. 16 songs in 35 minutes.
26 July 2010
Courtesy of Bastard Rock Records comes Violent Party vol. 1, the first in (hopefully) a series of live Japanese split tapes. Sapporo's SLANG finally made it stateside this past summer, and punks from Texas up to the east coast finally got to see for themselves what I have known to be true since 2000 - that a SLANG live show is something other worldly. A friend who toured with them said that their live prowess became almost something of a joke...they were simply so fukkn good every night that you could only laugh in amazement. Their music hit our shores a few years back when Schizophrenic (ok, Canadian shores, but they are connected to ours, so in this instance I'm going to stick with "our" shores) repressed the Skilled Rhythm Kills LP, but as great as that record is, live is the way to experience SLANG, and these three songs (recorded in July 2009) demonstrate that to the fullest, albeit through a rather hollow recording. There's a new split out and a new LP due in the coming months, both on Prank. STAGNATION took my ears by storm with a four track assault on Whispers In Darkness in '08, but even that could not prepare me for these three live numbers recorded this past January - total and complete mindfuck noisecore that is hopelessly addictive, perhaps chiefly because I can hear the songs that are buried under the white wash, and they are fukkn great. I missed them by days the last time I was in Japan, and this teaser puts them high on my 'must see' list for the future. "Elementum Dance Party" is my soundtrack for the day, what's yours? Cheers to Bastard Rock (no contact information or I would gladly share it with you) for this ear bleeding cassette.
25 July 2010
I first heard SLEEPING BODY from Karoline, and I was thoroughly unimpressed. Maybe it was a live thing, I thought, but that EP just sounded boring and atonal to me...fast forward 15 years and I devour every song on that single. Not sure whether my horizons expanded or my mind opened, but now this Ft. Worth, Texas band seems so bare and exposed, that I find it impossible to not be drawn in. SLEEPING BODY were a part of the chaotic early '90s community vaguely associated with (by sound, if not by necessarily by community) BORN AGAINST, MOSS ICON and early Gravity Records output, and with the exception of BORN AGAINST, most of that world skipped me completely. Jerky rhythms and excessively harsh vocals typify SLEEPING BODY, and this WFMU recording leads me to believe that their live shows were even more abrasive than the record. 36 minutes on the radio in 1992 that will not appeal to fans of straightforward punk/hardcore, but rather exemplify a new direction that was taken by bands struggling to break free from the confines (both musically and ideologically) and constraints placed on them by their adopted community. DIY, raw as hell, bare and exposed.
24 July 2010
A split tape featuring two one person noise/electronic projects that both embark on treks into the world of electro-clash, or some kind of new descriptor for the music that we used to just call new wave...but now that it ain't really new any more, we need to come up with new things to call it. N.213 is disjointed - the term 'quirky' certainly applies to these bedroom mixes, though the vibe is decidedly hip and lighthearted. JESSE TAYLOR, while making music that is more palatable, also manages to create a real mood with his songs. A sound that is equal parts stripped down VANISHING, KRAFTWERK and some lost atmospheric synth laden wizardry that still grooves. "Spell On You" is a classic lonely-highway-late-at-night song, while "Disco (Disappear/Forever)" is self indulgent and dreary minimal goth - perfect. But then, he does title his side of the tape Soft Disco, and I guess that term is pretty accurate as well.
23 July 2010
This tape came in a loaner box from Terminal Escape minion Blake, who was not only responsible for the other BCT tape posted, as well as many of the Oklahoma gems featured over the last year. BCT should need no introduction, and neither should 80s Italian hardcore, especially to people as cultured as yourselves, so dive in and party yer asses off to CHELSEA HOTEL, SHOCKIN TV, TIRITUTA LIMITATA (OK, maybe don't party to that one, it's not really all that great), EU'S ARSE, the always brilliant NABAT (I'm wearing their shirt right now, thanks Abe!), the cardboard box drum sound that PEGGIO PUNX somehow manage to make work in their favor, CHEETAH CHROME MOTHERFUCKERS, DARK RIDE (this band is so raw and shitty, I fukkn love it), and one brilliant track from the mysterious ROUGH. Top quality music for top quality people.
22 July 2010
I first heard Boston's THE NOT after I snagged their second self released record, the 1985 Kids Survive 12", on a whim and was suitably impressed. Killer hook laden punk that blurs the lines between power pop, mod, and tuneful garage punk - the vibe is laid back and chilled out but they fukkn jam. The catchy music is offset by photos of the band that seem to be as much in line with the back of an SSD record as with these rockers, shirtless teens flying through the air with Thrasher stickers on their instruments, sign me up. 1984's What's The Reason came into my life a little later, and THE NOT was placed firmly in my mental ranks of the unappreciated. Yesterday I was at Devon's place in Oakland, trying to pry out of him the years of cassettes that languish in boxes (I get a huge archive to play with, he gets them all ripped for free - what could be better?!), and I came across this gem, not the Break Free demo that I would still like to hear (Al - I know you have one, help me out?), but THE NOT live on New Jersey's WFMU in 1986. Songs from both records, a solid rendition of a BYRDS tune and a mediocre version of the oft covered "Shakin' All Over," but the energy is sky high, and the talent of this band is obvious. "I Won't Run Away" in it's live form could have been an 80s hit, the guitars are epic and the lyrical sentiment is a perfect reaction to the cold war-era fear and social frustrations than lurked silently under the surface in the 1980s. Nine songs, half an hour, and a picture of three dudes standing up against a brick wall.
21 July 2010
This is some kind of proto-post-neo-crust or some shit, but I think I like it. While a few of the drum beats do indeed scream "1990!!!!!" right in your face, the riffs that DECLINE dish out are solid, and it comes off like the good parts of Thrash Zone era DRI (and don't lie, there are a few good parts, even if only because they make you chuckle) mixed with MORAL SUCKLING or later DEVIATED INSTINCT. Favorite song here is "Fools," it sounds like AMEBIX playing late 80s era Bay Area thrash metal, but all the tunes manage to pull of a certain charm. Wednesdays are for proto-post-neo-crust from now on....or at least for this week.
20 July 2010
Here's a 13 minute slab for those of you who think that raw distorted and chaotic DBeat noise punk can only come from Kochi-City, Japan and Portland. The rough streets of Long Beach are littered with testosterone overloaded would-be surf bros sketched out on bathtub crank, and an over-saturation of third rate white boy faux dub/reggae, but beneath the surface and in the shadows you will always finds The Punx, and this time they manifest in the form of MASSIVE ORDNANCE AIR BLAST. Six tunes that start with textbook raw DBeat and move from there to insane blown out breakneck UK tinged hardcore. "Tweaker Waste" is a total Bristol style scorcher, but then "Economic Collapse" has a breakdown worthy of a clean cut So Cal finger pointing dogpile, and "Industrial Machine" has a City Babies-era G.B.H. feel. The highlight of the tape is the four minute closer, "Concentration Camp," a reverb drenched mid tempo introduction leads to a fist pounding song that is fucking brilliant in its pure simplicity, and the only thing I want to do after listening is start the tape over again. The drummer for M.O.A.B. was also in Jakarta, Indonesia's PEACE OR ANNIHILATION, and is in Long Beach attending university. Lucky Long Beach dudes grabbed themselves a rager behind the kit, and here's hoping that there's a vinyl release in the near future.
19 July 2010
This Victoria, British Columbia band kicked around from late 80s to the mid 90s, and I don't believe they ever released any vinyl, but these 45 minutes are more than enough to convince me of their worth. Abrasive, fast and raspy melodic hardcore, SECTION 46 come off like a modern incarnation of FUNERAL ORATION mixed with melodic 90s punk (HICKEY keeps coming to mind, though that could be something about the approach rather than the tunes themselves, early SHOTWELL might be a better musical comparison, but way faster). The pace is frantic, the vocals are blown out but still worthy of the off key back ups (which are awesome even if not actually good...). I gather that they were contemporaries of RENDER USELESS and other Victoria bands I already like, and have seen their name mentioned in discussions about first and/or influential punk and hardcore gigs. Unfortunately, my copy of The Downtrodden (with While Injustice Continues on the flipside for a future post) comes with no song titles, so these 22 songs are simply named by number.
18 July 2010
One of the many bands from the 80s UK punk explosion who never made it to vinyl, PANORAMA IN BLACK wrote material that was head and shoulders above the heaps of cookie cutter punk 45s that flooded the market (and the charts). Their City Of Dreams demo (which is included in this tape in it's entirety) would have been a classic EP had it been on wax, but instead we get that demo from 1983 and this one a year later: an hour long live "farewell" show split into two sets. They crank through killer tunes like "Soldier Boy," "Terminal Boredom" (they play it twice, but it's really good so that's fine with me), and the brilliant set ender "Show Me The Way To Go Home." Two cover tunes here, "Stepping Stone" and "Wild Thing" (Serious question: Why were the UK punks so fukking obsessed with that song? No version is good, not the original, not any of the schlock covers, I don't get it. At least "Sonic Reducer" and "Strychnine" were good songs to start with and people just butchered them to shit for 30 years...."Wild Thing" is nothing more than a pathetic poor man's "Louie Louie" for fukk's sake), but the original tunes here are awesome, and Spence's between song rants get steadily drunker as the night's sets continue - shit, they play for over an hour, so I guess it's logical that the dude would get a little hammered, innit? The recording is top notch, and the versions of the City Of Dreams tracks might even be better than the original demo, especially "Be My Friend," great buzzsaw guitars with just the right amount of flange to give it a slightly goth edge. The tracks here were recorded in June 1984 at Murrayside Youth Club, and then the band was done. Too bad, as this shit sounds fukking excellent today, enjoy.
I found this from the guitarist Jim, a great history of the band (and other bands he was in). You can also snag other PANORAMA IN BLACK recordings that never made it to the demos...
17 July 2010
Harsh and beautiful electronic noise. JUHYO hail from Minneapolis and are responsible for a 14 minute piece that takes you from mellow droning static not unlike what you might hear is you left your AM radio alone while you travelled through the mountains at night to evil, shrieking and mesmerizing waves of sound. The track ends with a nearly three minute ambient cool down, fucking brilliant shit. Portland's OKHA land on the more industrial side of things, like a swarm of metallic cicadas surrounding your pathetic little world. No let up, no cool down, after an 18 minute assault, the sound just ends, leaving me feeling rather hollow. This comes courtesy of the fine folks at Hear More!, who are responsible for many quality releases in the realms of the noise and the heavy, highly recommended.
16 July 2010
Every so often some enterprising punk offers to send me some tapes to add to the Terminal Escape family. Most of the time these folks are about as good on their follow through as I am when I promise to do something for someone (this is to say - not very good at all) and I completely understand, as there are lots of things I've meant to do and things I've meant to send to people for ages. In fact I just rearranged some stuff and found a shirt I told a dude in Brasil I would send him back in 2002. I sent it anyway, but I figure he's probably moved by now, so there's some square in Vila Velha chilling on the beach rocking some bikini briefs and an extra large GEHENNA shirt and I'm sure he looks quite debonair. But the CEO of H.R.S. Records is clearly a man of his word, and today I would like to share 20 minutes of the finest ass shakin' punk rock I've been handed in ages. THE STEAKNIVES open with a killer KBD style burner called "Stupid People," and while the bar is set awful high with that track, then follow it up with SCHOOL JERKS and the classic 50s rock tinged URAGANY right into raw garage trash from X-DISCOS and I'm in heaven. A live tune from Boston's SOCIAL CIRKLE (covering a jam by THE LEFT no less) and amazing damaged synth punk from BRAINDAMAGE close out Side A. On the flip is NO with ultra lo-fi shits, RICH WHITE MALES sound kinda typical in the garage rock world, but Albany's ROBOCOCK step it up with an ultra catchy song that encapsulates most of the good shit about 90s hook laden hardcore. Back to chaotic noisy garage with THE TRITES, a brilliant SPITS style ripper from THE GAY GERMANS and then wrap shit up with BOB BURNS from Wisconsin doing their best to solidify that state's reputation as a breeding ground for crucial under the radar jams. You can get your own copy of this tape here if you feel like supporting the scene, or you can just download it for free and hope that the folk(s) at H.R.S. can afford to keep spending their precious and limited resources to make sure that you get your ears rammed full of kick ass punk while you just sit in a chair and remove yourself even further from social interaction. I mean, it's totally your call.
15 July 2010
I find it hard to reconcile this demo with onslaught of killer brutal hardcore/noise/crust that has oozed out of Portland's pores recently, but BI-MARKS break the PDX Punk mold and just play hi energy punk. The thing is: they play it better than most of the bands I've heard...just blast "Fuck My Generation" and if you aren't in love then we might not be friends. Every song is catchy as hell, tons of great hooks throughout the demo, but while I'm reminded of the good shit that came out of the early 90s I still can't call this pop punk (full disclosure here: the first band I thought of when I heard this was Mississippi's WHITE TRASH SUPERMAN, truly one of the greatest unsung bands of the 90s, and the first record I put on after I heard this demo was Don't Turn Away from FACE TO FACE which is one of the guiltiest pleasures in my collection - this tape sounds like neither, but it achieves the same melodic hook laden brilliance of both while still staying in your face and punk as shit). The recording is lo-fi as hell - part of which is a poor reproduction on my cassette - and it helps the songs sound even more punk, especially the warbling guitar on "No Comment" and "Throw Away The World." Fast as hell and playing with purpose, BI-MARKS are breakneck melodic hardcore that combine elements of loads of bands that rule while sounding like none of them - shit rules. One of the three guitarists is in NERVESKADE, but don't let that be your reference point...instead think early 80s LA meets mid 80s Midwest with a totally charismatic singer (not a vocalist - a singer) and all sped up a little too fast. Jakke tells me it's the best live show in Portland, and after several listens I can't really say that surprises me. Do yourself a favor.
oh yeah..."High Time" is a ZERO BOYS cover, and in the interest of full disclosure I didn't recognize it on first listen it. I knew the song but I couldn't identify the original, so I called John and sung him the chorus, then I called Uncle Fun in Milwaukee who knows all things rock & roll (apparently not quite) and then I wrote Mike, who most of you should visit more often - just click on his name to find out why - and even he couldn't figure out what song I was talking about. Finally I wrote Jakke and he told me it was ZERO BOYS and I felt like a total dummy and then Jakke told me about how CRAZY SPIRIT covered a RAMONES song and tried to get him to sing and he didn't recognize it and I didn't feel so bad anymore. Also, the title track to the YOUNG OPTIMISTS CLUB demo is so good that it maybe should be illegal.
14 July 2010
Plodding and atonal UK punk from 1989. Admittedly this sounds rather dated, and would probably be of more interest had it been recorded 10 years earlier, but aside from the tortuous tempo (everything here needs to be sped up several notches) these songs are pretty damn good. Great melodramatic snarled vocals - even when singing about breakfast - suit the music well, and keep things from getting dull while you wish the band would play faster. Also, in case you skipped past it, the cover art is pretty bad ass.
13 July 2010
This is a band I'm in. We've only played a few shows so far, because I had surgery and was laid up and then went on tour (a few times) and then Mark (the guitarist - he used to be in DESTROY) went to Thailand and now B (the drummer - he used to be in END OF THE CENTURY PARTY) is about to leave for Germany in a couple of weeks to continue his studies and philosophizing. All of this is a bummer for Ruby (the singer - she used to be in SCROTUM GRINDER) who just wants to fucking play shows but we dudes are all too busy...she is very patient. We recorded this on cassette using two microphones, and I think it sounds pretty good for a raw ass rehearsal demo. There are vinyl releases in store for later in 2010...don't worry about the details, I will hype liberally when they are out. A few folks asked me to put this shit up here, which is flattering of course, so here it is.
12 July 2010
This cacophonous ruckus comes from Brisbane, Australia, sometime in the 1980s. Sadly my tape is warped to shit, so you miss out on "World's A Mess pt. 2" and their sexual rendition of "Wild Thing" (called "Pink Thing," and featuring lines like: "pink thing // you make my cock stink // you make everything all smelly and yucky"), and songs like "It Happened One Night" and "Love Song" are now rather trying listens filled with static and noise coming from a tape struggling earnestly to bring this unknown punk to your ears. But when it works, CRUCIFIED TRUTH deliver some of the most painfully awkward and horrific hardcore punk I have ever heard. Hesitant and out of tune intros lead to completely nonsensical bursts of teen fury directed at cops, christ and everything in between. The first couple of tunes ("Cops Are Cunts" and "What's On My Pizza") are legitimate ragers, and the guitar is so fucking off that is comes across like art and helps give the songs even more of an edge than they would have if it were simply timeless (as in "without any sense of time") bashing on the drums and with a pile of mess placed haphazardly on top - now it's a horribly out of tune pile of mess, and that makes an amazing recording brilliant. I am instantly reminded of the greatest teenage band from Michigan (AFTERBIRTH, whose mind blowing/mind numbing Who's In There EP has received more spins and confused looks in my house over the last seven years than any record I've ever owned), but CRUCIFIED TRUTH are way faster and arguably sloppier than AFTERBIRTH, so it's like being into MINOR THREAT, and then you hear BAD BRAINS and you're all like, "Whoah!! It's all the same good shit, but there's even more of it, and it's faster!!" Completely inept, incoherent, and arguably insignificant, but CRUCIFIED TRUTH will worm their way into the hearts of shit-fi fans and those who appreciate the outsider art approach to music. There can be no doubt that they are going for it 100% with a gusto rarely equalled, and sometimes that's more fun to listen to than killer riffs - even if it does make me feel a little queasy after a while.
11 July 2010
My buddy and bandmate Dathan joined this band when I still lived in Milwaukee. ARCHITECTS were suburban hessians that seemed to have no connection whatsoever with our relatively city based punk scene, and watching Dathan jam with these dudes was equal parts fun and social fascination. I saw them a couple of times, and it was pretty good, but I got this tape that was recorded for their recent Midwest tour, and eat my balls if ARCHITECTS OF THE AFTERMATH didn't turn into a thrash metal monster in the two years since I moved away. Guitar riffing that worships at the altar of early METALLICA and the speed metal end of the Metal Blade Records spectrum fits perfectly with the non stop double kick attack and vocals that are frighteningly powerful (like how you know Phil Anselmo is capable of being a bad ass singer but he just insists on ruining it by being a cornball? well this dude is all the fury and none of the cheese), and it makes for a tape that sounds old but totally new as well. The shit sounds huge when played at proper volume (and not on fucking computer speakers, you dimwit - play this shit in your Monte Carlo, where Heavy Metal always sounds better), and though it's not my typical brand of musical stylings, I've been jamming this thing on steady since in came in the mail. Tuck into some ARCHITECTS.
The band is on a little hiatus, while Dathan is in Panama studying ways to save the world's ecosystem or some shit. I find this behavior to be quite non-metal, but nonetheless the view from his bedroom (photo above, in case you couldn't figure out why the tropical island scene was attached to the heavy metal download) seems pretty bad ass. Other things that are bad ass include the song "I Can Kill Gods," which is officially my Jam Of The Day. Even though I initially scoffed at the excessive Chug on E that closes Side A of this demo, it did not take long for me to climb onboard the horse headed to thrash metal heaven.
10 July 2010
Look at those paisleys!! You know this shit sounds like a bowl of non-confrontational corn flakes, right? You should also know that I'm posting this A.O.S.3 demo to remind you that you should be working in your garden (urban or otherwise), reconnecting with long lost friends (digitally or otherwise), making a mix tape (analog only), or smashing the system instead of downloading long forgotten tapes off the internet. Seriously. The most interesting tune here is "3rd World War," which somehow takes the bass line from DEAD KENNEDYS "Holiday In Cambodia" and slows it down to make it relatively uninteresting, adds a guitar lick lifted directly from JOY DIVISION and peppers the tune with vocals trying so earnestly to be intense. The acoustic BILLY BRAGG sounding tune "Embers" is the shortest jam on the tape, and even it approaches the 4 minute mark...get ready to get into some anarcho dub/ska/reggae. Or perhaps you could read a book, totally up to you.
09 July 2010
08 July 2010
NERVESKADE hit the Bay Area again in May (they ruled again, in case you were wondering), and this time they brought friends from Sacramento. When I hear "bass/drums/female vocals playing UK style punk" my interest is not piqued...so when I tell you that is what VERRÄTERISCH sound like, please trust me when I tell you that they fukkn RULE. This band blew away everyone at the Lipo Lounge that night; three weirdos from 90 miles away showed that basement full (ok, 1/3 full) of jaded Big City Shitbags exactly how to make a room explode. Every song was instantly catchy, I didn't miss the guitar even once, and the repetitive doo-da-doo-da beat that drove every song was perfect for the singer's neon clad one woman dance party...we were all invited to the party, though she was determined to bounce off all the walls whether we wanted to join her or not. The backing vocals are almost comical, just a periodic barrage of "AARRRRRGGHGH" and/or "YYYYEEEEAAARRRGH" that makes is impossible to not sing along with every chorus. The whole thing is sung in German (their name means 'TREACHEROUS'), and don't be alarmed at the chorus of "Hellhunde" which at first listen sounds substantially more nefarious than it actually is. This demo manages to be fierce and angry while still having fun, which is a great accomplishment...hopefully they make their way back down here again sooner rather than later or I might have to go to Sacramento.
07 July 2010
This 40+ minute test is a way more primitive animal than SHOCK TREATMENT's Scrumpy Jack demo posted last July. The chorus to "No More Censorship" sounds suspiciously similar to MISFITS' "TV Casualty" and, the cover of "Wild Thing" is even less essential than one might expect a cover of "Wild Thing" to be, but the sheer monotony of "Gorge and Vomit," the strangely appealing acoustic guitar in "Stone's Throw Away" and the earnest attempt at fury on "Waste Of Space" make this demo a total winner. I Can't Hear Fuck All is the epitome of a demo - rough around the edges (and in the middle, to be honest) punk rock in it's purest form, delivered with total earnest honesty. Sure, the RAMONES and PUBLIC IMAGE LTD. covers might be unnecessary, but punk is punk - and punk supersedes almost all that crap that you think is good, so you need to get into this shit right now.
06 July 2010
The SEALINGS demo I posted in January was quite well received, perhaps because Terminal Escape readers have, for the mot part, excellent taste. After seeking out SEALINGS on the internets, I was directed to the fine folks at Free Loving Anachists (careful with that link, if you dig this kind of shit then you can get lost there for a long long time) who dealt out this split a few months back. LOIS MAGIC play two songs separated by an interlude...distorted and dreary pop music for fans of self indulgent post adolescents lurking in dark corners, the song "Sweetheart" alone is more than worth the whole download. SEALINGS are a supercharged version of the same animal: underneath the distortion and the guitars (that sound just as suited for a lo-fi Eastern European black metal bedroom band as they do this project) are brilliantly crafted pop songs...a wash of other sounds mask the songs in the same way that MY BLOODY VALENTINE hid perfectly simple tunes underneath mountains of guitar effects, but the tunes are there - and when you find them, they are catchy as hell. "Atomised" appears again (it's on the first demo as well), but "Out Cold" is the must have song on this tape, a brief trip that makes me a little seasick by swelling up and releasing sound. Enjoy.
05 July 2010
I prefer the later CIVILISED SOCIETY material, even though it's a little more metal and a little less punk, but this 1984 demo is a fukkn masterpiece. A solid half hour of politically charged UK punk - there's probably enough written about them already, but You Must Be Joking is the best recorded of the first wave of demos that are floating around (including the one I posted back in March, which features slightly rougher versions of seven songs on this tape). Songs like "Crazy Town" fall a little flat when heard through modern ears (two of which I use on a daily basis), but "Everyone's A Loser" and "Civilised Society" are certifiable UK scorchers, and I'm still a fan of the shameless anti-system/animal rights bent on "Little Animals" and "Home Is Where The Stench Is." Quality shit.
And just in case you need still more CIVILISED SOCIETY, this live set is on the flip side of my copy of You Must Be Joking. "Just Another War Song," "No Exit," "Fashion," "It's A Crime" and three others in brilliantly distorted live show splendor. It's strange to me that the vocals (particularly Bev's) typically sound better on live tapes than on proper studio recordings...adrenalin perhaps? Or maybe it was alcohol - whatever the cause, they sound fantastic here.
04 July 2010
Back in April I missed the Heavy Focus noise fest in Minneapolis, but all reports were that it was a stellar weekend. My most notable disappointment was not seeing the live debut of TRTRKMMR, but after I got a package of goodies in the mail from John it became clear that there was a mountain of quality aural desecration that I missed out on. It took me ages to sift through the tapes I got in the mail, but the first one I devoured is also the first one I'll share: CUSTODIAN. Wave after wave of whitewashed sonic distortion...I found that I could tune it out and it became rather ambient and pleasing, but when you listen to the shit that's going on it is completely transfixing. It's kinda like America: if you tune it out it turns into a dull roar, but if you actually pay attention you find yourself exclaiming: "What the FUCK is going on?!?"
03 July 2010
Black Anarchy tapes deliver 22 minutes of patience testing rudimentary UK punk courtesy of VOMIT. The cover calls this the Nihilist Insurrection demo, and honestly that name is more fitting than the Live In The System moniker scrawled on the tape label. Seven songs (there were 8 on the tape, but "You Cannot Hide" was damaged and warped far beyond repair) played at a grade school level and recorded in a manner that highlights the "quaint" ineptitude of VOMIT. Female vocals are shrieked at timeless intervals, plodding drums bash out one of two standard UK punk beats and a guitar fumbles away at one string, typically not venturing beyond the three notes per song ratio. But the thing that confuses me the most is that I LOVE THIS!! Yes, it's fucking awful, but VOMIT assault every aspect of my senses simultaneously, and drench everything in accidental and incidental noise (including AM radio fuzz and other random soundscapes between songs...and sometimes during them) so that the result is sometimes an amalgamation of CRASS and THROBBING GRISTLE. There is even more magic on Side 2, but the tape snapped in half two songs in, so I'll hold that one off till a later day (after my ringing endorsement of "Yes, it's fucking awful" I'm sure that all Terminal Escape readers are anxiously awaiting the tape's repair), but today you get seven inept attempts at song and one brilliant 6+ minute noise assault likely created in someone's bedroom 25 some odd years ago. You win.
02 July 2010
Great late 80s UR60 with a roster that was almost entirely new to me upon first listen. MUNCH start off with a mellow instrumental that sounds like 17 Seconds-era CURE, and LOVE OVER LAW follow up with a track that might have qualified for unknown anarcho status were it not for the layers of guitars and attempt at professional production...a great tune nonetheless. ANOTHER FINE MESS are a little more melodic and 4 PAST MIDNIGHT are more stripped down and basic, while JOEY FAT slip into some of the crevices that started killing off good punk bands in the late 80s (trying to go the more serious and/or metal route without the technical ability or recording budget to really pull it off). SICK SOCIETY are straightforward driving UK punk but somehow they remind me of SOCIAL DISTORTION at the same time, and an a cappella track from LOVE OVER LAW breaks up the first side before a total DBeat burner from 4 PAST MIDNIGHT and a predictably hippie sounding song from TOFU SURPRISE - complete with acoustic guitars and chirping birds. Metallic crust from DECADENCE WITHIN and a noise track from ETAT DES STOCKS round out Side A. On the flip, there are more songs from ANOTHER FINE MESS, SICK SOCIETY, JOEY FAT, LOVE OVER LAW, MUNCH (drum machine driven bizarre goth punk this time, awesome band), 4 PAST MIDNIGHT (the highlight of the tape) and another outro from ETAT DES STOCKS rounds out 30 minutes that also includes a self indulgent (but kinda awesome) track from DEATHRAGE and other oddness courtesy of a band called 2267. Fridays are for mix tapes at Terminal Escape, and this comp from F.I.S. is a perfect introduction to heaps of great bands - which is the whole purpose of the format. Enjoy your weekend.